On Monday 2nd April, 62 pupils from Year 10 gathered at Trent to load up the minibuses before heading out to the Peak District for their Bronze Duke of Edinburgh Qualifying Expedition. The fleet of five minibuses with all the pupils and nine supervising adults along with two trailers made their way to Hassop Station on the Monsal Trail, just north of Bakewell. After sorting out all the rucksacks and having a final briefing with the supervisors, the groups set off on their various routes. Each of these routes, planned in detail by the pupils over the previous weeks, was about 12-14 kms long and was due to last about 6 hours.
All nine groups displayed good navigational skills and worked very well as teams. There were a few minor detours, but nothing that delayed the groups too long and they all made their way safely to their campsites at Haddon Grove or Monyash. Once in camp, the groups again showed good campcraft skills in the way they set up their tents and got on with cooking their food. In the morning, despite some light rain, the story was similar with all making suitably early departures on their second day. Once again, there were no major mishaps during day 2 and the groups ended up back at Hassop Station, where they had a debrief with their Assessor and gave a detailed oral report about their chosen topic.
This expedition went very smoothly. Credit for this must firstly go to the pupils who proved themselves competent, well-organised, positive and resilient. Thanks also go to the eight staff and one parent who took such good care of the groups, and finally to the three Assessors (Paul, Tom and JP) for their time, enthusiasm and expertise.